About Dr. Meg Jordan

Dr. Meg Jordan, PhD, RN, CWP, is a medical anthropologist known as the Global Medicine Hunter®. She is an integrative health specialist, international health journalist, and a professor at the California Institute of Integral Studies.

The Three Top Ways to Get Off the Stress Train

Stress is an all too common 21st century ailment, and the workplace is the number one stress-maker. According to the Canadian Occupational Safety, workers feel overwhelmed because “there aren’t enough hours in the day,” or else they say they’re “in over their heads” with too many responsibilities. The feeling of being squeezed in a job that has unrealistic demands and inadequate decision-making power leaves many employees with a long list of stress symptoms, ranging from chronic headaches to gastric distress.

A nagging complaint can soon turn into a more serious stress-related disorder. In fact, stress-induced illness now ranks as the chief disability filing for workers. A half-century ago, worksite problems centered on injuries to the back and limbs. But today, in a hurry-up world of impossible deadlines and workers tied to their computers, ergonomic injury has shifted from low back to head, neck and shoulder tightness and stress headaches. If you feel that your world of work is spinning too fast and you’re feeling a little out of control, you could use some help on three fronts:

First, lighten your workload. I know, easier said than done. But there is a limit to maximizing worker productivity, and if you are worried about the inherent problems with complaining to a boss about mounting demands, then consider the other avenues at your workplace for resolving the pressure: talk to your boss’s boss and to your human resources department. Judd Allen, President of the Human Resources Institute, believes that performance anxieties are best handled by companies in which leaders know that well-being is critical for organizational effectiveness.

Second, shore up your ability to cope with stress. Transfer some of that perfectionism about doing a good job to a healthy attitude about your personal health habits. Start your workday with a protein breakfast and targeted supplementation of an adaptogen such as Red Reishi. Adaptogens are nature’s miracles, the pre-eminent means for helping your body ward off the damaging effects of chronic stress. You can take adaptogens every day, unlike most herbs. Look for high quality, hot-water extracted Red Reishi from Japan for ultimate benefit of its phytonutrient power.

Third, move like your life depended on it. Daily exercise, at least 30 minutes a day, is one of the greatest de-stressors known. Your body needs this fail-safe means to let off steam, and your workaholic brain will finally relax.

Balance: An Exercise in Hitting the Reset Button

Let’s have some straight talk about balance. Have you noticed how self-help advice always says, “keep your life in balance”? Living life in balance might be a sweet notion for greater health and happiness, but it’s not really how people live.

Consistent balance is just an illusion. There are days we overdo it, and days we recover or shrink back from a hectic pace. No one has the power to maintain perfect balance every day. You can’t avoid delays in traffic, or frustration on a work project, or getting to bed way too late some times… but you can fortify your capacity to restore balance. The best reset button for doing just that is a daily intake of Japanese Red Reishi – a powerful, natural, mushroom supplement. Here is why I consider it a master of restoring balance.

Mental Balance
Red Reishi is an anti-inflammatory, helping put out the small chronic “fires” throughout the body that could lead to memory loss, cognitive decline, even the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Taking an adaptogen like Japanese Red Reishi on a daily basis restores calmness and clarifies youthful vitality.

Hormonal Balance
Japanese Red Reishi is excellent for providing balance within the endocrine system. Overstressed neuro-endocrine connections lead to distress and chronic ailments. Red Reishi’s support for the adrenal glands is superior to other nutritional compounds.

Circadian Balance
The grand orchestra leader in your body (your circadian rhythms) require completely dark nights for sleep and well lighted days for exertion for proper sleep, blood pressure control, and optimal function. Red Reishi assists circadian rhythms by its adaptogenic action, making the task of maintaining balance much easier.

Energy Intake / Output Balance
Nutritional deficiencies or excesses can really throw off balance. You need adequate daily hydration, a balanced intake of macro and micro nutrients, and at least 60 minutes of physical exertion per day to maintain a healthy weight and metabolism. Red Reishi helps with weight control by balancing glucose metabolism through adrenal support, and by giving you a smooth energy boost throughout the day.

Planetary Balance
As you strive for balance in your personal life, you become more aware of balance with the entire ecosystem. Sustainability may start with your own personal space and body, but it does extend to an environmental audit of how you’re living on the planet. The Mikei Japanese Red Reishi is sustainably grown and harvested, instead of wild crafted which could endanger natural balance. Since the product is made responsibly, even your integrity remains in balance.

Making Red Reishi Your Immune System’s “Personal Trainer”

We’ve learned a great deal recently about the immune system. Just imagine a vast interconnected system of component cells that communicate with each other. Some cells are warriors; some engulfers; others nudge another cell to do its job.

In fact, scientists discovered that you actually have two immune systems–the innate one you’re born with that remains unchanged and a secondary one known as the adaptive immune system, which benefits from having “personal trainers”, or natural compounds that activate the adaptive immune cells.

Diet, exercise, and managed stress help the immune system function properly. But when it falters, (i.e., not detecting cancer cells or getting frequent colds) then

Immunity needs a boost. That is when adaptogens can come into play, botanicals that improve the body’s ability to cope with stress, disease, and immune system breakdown. Red reishi, or Ling Zhi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum), is the monarch of adaptogens.

Over 30 years of study proves that red reishi has the highest concentration of phytonutrients such as betaglucans and triterpenes or ganoderic acids. It boosts your body’s natural defense and combats infection. More importantly, because red reishi is an immune modulator, it has the ability to detect what is needed, and give it the right nudge in the right direction—an extraordinary feat no drug has duplicated.

Red reishi also benefits T-cells, cytokines, and macrophages—all important players. And red reishi can safely be taken every day without risk of toxicity or build-up. It’s your immune system’s personal trainer…don’t go a day without it.

A Red Reishi a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

Every culture has its health slogans, and they all have an element of truth. In India, you hear “Laughter is the best medicine.” In Africa, it’s Harambee—You’re only as well as your community. The most memorable in North America is, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Dating from 19th century Wales, that health adage was primarily referred to apple being a rich source of fiber, keeping one regular.

But in Japan, the “apple a day” is actually a medicinal mushroom known as red reishi, which has a long recorded history of numerous benefits—so many that the legendary emperors and doctors of 4,000 years ago regarded it as the superior herb for overall health and longevity. Today, you’ll find red reishi supplements in most household cabinets across Asia. People truly don’t go a day without it since reishi is outstanding for naturally increasing energy, enhancing immunity, and beating stress.

Now that scientific studies confirm what traditional herbalists have long known, more Western doctors are getting convinced that red reishi might just be the new “apple a day.” The therapeutic compounds contained in this remarkable mushroom include polysaccharides, which offer a wide range of benefits from improving blood pressure to modulating blood sugar. Reishi also has triterpenes, specifically ganoderic acid, which improves liver function and heart health. However, when harvested in the wild, reishi’s therapeutic compounds can vary dramatically. That is why it is important to use a brand that has proven methods of cultivation and manufacturing to achieve the highest quality reishi product.

The Japanese are foremost experts on reishi growing, with one Japanese family having identified and patented the most superior strain of red reishi for generations. Mikei Red Reishi uses this superior strain which has been proven to provide the highest quality of healthful compounds. The mycelium is grown to maturity and organically cultivated on aged logs for a full year. It is then harvested, and prepared according to the traditional hot water extraction method. While many manufacturers take short-cuts and simply chop up the mushroom as cost-saving measures, you can trust Mikei to provide you with the extraordinary “apple a day” from the East.

Restore your inner balance: Defeat stress with nature’s best adaptogen

When it comes to the occasional stressor, we humans do just fine. We’re hard wired to respond quickly and easily because our hind and midbrains are the envy of the mammalian world. Not only can we fight or flee, we can huddle, nest, nurture, lay in wait like a spring-loaded cougar, and recall stressful events in order to sidestep danger over and over.

It’s the over and over part that’s the killer. Too much unrelieved stress accumulates in the body and has a devastating effect on our physiology and psychology. This wear and tear can result in headaches, poor concentration, fatigue, muscle tension, insomnia, heartburn, and malaise. Left unchecked, elevated chronic stress can aggravate seven chronic conditions (cancer, heart disease, hypertension, mental disorders, diabetes, pulmonary conditions, and stroke). Doctors now suspect that the majority of hospital admissions may be related to stressful mismanagement of poor lifestyle choices.

What’s the key to relieving chronic stress? Balance. Not just balancing your work life—after a decade of advice, nobody seems to be managing that. Instead, we need inner balance of our body’s physiology. All systems need to be quickly restored to balance whenever stress levels get out of hand. Balance is achieved through mediation of cortisol and epinephrine, the body’s stress hormones, triggered by the autonomic nervous system. And even though all of these hormones have important jobs to do, when there is an unrelenting stream of them, the body and mind can’t function optimally.

This is where nature’s adaptogenic herbs come in. You can slowly recover on your own, or you can use a little daily help in the form of an adaptogenic mushroom such as red reishi. As an adaptogen, red reishi modulates the body’s stress response, restoring homeodynamic balance and calm. Red reishi, like all adaptogens, restores balance to the stress hormones; but research reveals it can also smooth out the highs and lows of blood glucose, blood pressure, and blood lipids (triglyceride and LDL-cholesterol). Plus, red reishi can be safely taken every day. One less thing to worry about!

Holiday Stress?

Bah humbug. Pass the mushrooms. Red Reishi mushrooms, that is.

Although stress is an unavoidable aspect of modern life, we keep thinking we can eliminate it. I saw an employee bulletin with the headline, “Get rid of stress for the holidays!” The “season’s greeting” was filled with grim statistics about how heart attacks, strokes, ER visits, and auto accidents tend to soar at the end of the year. As if all the shopping, cooking, and in-law invasion was not enough good cheer.

When you’re overloaded with obligations, the simplest path to stress reduction is simply saying no. But, when this involves your job, picking up relatives at the airport, or finding the right gift for a loved one, the word rarely escapes your lips.

The next best thing to saying “no” is to take a second course of action: increase your tolerance for withstanding stress. Otherwise, long-term stress can leave you depleted and vulnerable to illness.

Red reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) has long been valued by practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine as a superior herb for health and longevity. Containing the highest concentration of polysaccharides and ganoderic acids of any medicinal mushroom, red reishi works as an adaptogen to help the body cope with everything from mental stress and sleep deprivation, to trauma and overexertion. Just what you need during the holidays!

There is no pharmaceutical treatment that can provide this kind of health-enhancing adaptogenic support. Plus, studies show that red reishi supports healthy immune function, helping you to ward off colds and flu. It also boosts the cardiovascular system by reducing cholesterol, inhibiting platelet aggregation, and reducing blood pressure.

In addition, red reishi has been shown to help with glucose metabolism, promote anti-inflammatory effects, and increase liver protection ─ without any toxic build-up or side effects. Just one capsule a day of a high quality red reishi supplement can help return you physically and mentally to a healthy and balanced state. You will also love all the extra energy red reishi gives you during this hectic time of year!

In my clinical practice, I make sure my patients get through the holidays and beyond with this amazing medicinal mushroom. Through research, I have discovered that the best quality red reishi supplements are made in Japan. I recommend taking a daily supplement of Mikei Red Reishi Capsules which are manufactured according to the highest standards set forth by the Japan Reishi Association. Taking Mikei ensures that you are getting the full complement of phytonutrients unique to red reishi. Since Mikei (pronounced “mee-kay”) is of such high quality, the benefits are usually noticed within a few days to a week of taking them.